[ forwarding on behalf of Patricia Johann ]
Operational and Categorical Approaches to Parametricity
Department of Computer and Information Sciences
University of Strathclyde, Scotland
Applications are invited for one PhD position within the newly-formed
Mathematically Structured Programming group at the University of
Strathclyde. The group comprises Prof. Neil Ghani, Dr. Patricia Johann, and
Dr. Conor McBride. The funded PhD project centers around operational and
categorical approaches to relational parametricity, which serves as the
basis for deriving both structured tools for programming with, and
effective techniques for reasoning about, functional programs, solely from
their (polymorphic) types. The project aims to develop the theoretical
foundations of parametricity for languages supporting advanced datatypes
--- such as nested types, GADTs, and their mixed-variance versions --- as
well as to apply these foundations to program transformations and other
applications. The project is under the direction of Patricia Johann.
The successful applicant will have an MSc in Mathematics or Computing
Science or a related subject with a strong Mathematics or Computing Science
component. Ideally, they will also have a strong, documented interest in
doing research. Strong mathematical background and problem-solving skills
are essential; good programming skills are a plus. Prior knowledge in the
areas of operational semantics, category theory, and/or parametricity is an
advantage, but is not required.
The PhD position is for 3 years; the start date is negotiable. The position
is a fully-funded post for a home (i.e., UK) student, and includes both
coverage of fees and an EPSRC-level stipend for each of the three years.
For European students, the post covers only fees (i.e., no stipend is
More information about the department is available at
The University of Strathclyde (http://www.strath.ac.uk) is located in
heart of Glasgow, which Lonely Planet Travel Guides hail as "one of
Britain's largest, liveliest and most interesting cities" (see
Scotland provides a particularly stimulating environment for researchers in
theoretical computer science, with active groups in this area at
Heriot-Watt University, the University of Edinburgh, the University of
Glasgow, the University of St. Andrews, and the University of Strathclyde.
Requests for further information and other informal enquiries can be sent
Patricia.Johann at cis.strath.ac.uk
(The group is currently in the process of moving to the University of
Strathclyde, so the above is the best contact address for the duration of
the summer. Students interested in joining the group to work on other
topics should contact Prof. Ghani at Neil.Ghani at cis.strath.ac.uk, since
further positions are expected soon.
Those interested in the position are asked to send e-mail to the address
given above. Full Details of the application process are available upon
request, but an application will include:
1. A cover letter stating the applicant's specific interest in the
2. A full curriculum vitae, including an abstract of the applicant's
graduate thesis and the name of their supervisor.
3. Letters of recommendation or references from at least two
scientific staff members. (Letters of recommendation should either
be included along with the application, or should arrive
4. A completed application for postgraduate study at the University
Applications, forms for letters of recommendation, and instructions are
Applications will be considered until the position is filled, but those
received on or before
15 August 2008
will have priority.